Saturday, December 19, 2009

Potato pancakes with soyrizo onion gravy

These are perfect for the morning after you've made mashed potatoes!

for the cakes you'll need:

3 cups mashed potatoes
1/2 cup applesauce
1 1/2 tbls. braggs liquid aminos
3 tbls. olive oil
2 heaping tsp. minced garlic
4 tsp. baking powder
3 tbls. whole wheat flour

and to make them:
combine baking powder, flour, and olive oil in bowl before adding the additional ingredients and mixing well. Preheat to medium-high heat and lightly oil your skillet, (if you fancy yourself a chef you should have a seasoned cast iron pan! ...but if you don't they'll still be good) before adding the mixture in fist sized balls to the pan. Flatten the balls into cake shape with your spatula and fry for about four minutes per side, or until each side is a light crispy brown.

for the gravy you'll need:
1 medium sized onion
1 package soyrizo sausage
1/2 cup black coffee
1/2 cup tofutti sour cream (sour supreme has hydrogenated oil so go with the original)
2 tbls. nutritional yeast

and to make it:
thinly slice the onion and add to a skillet that's been preheated to medium. Saute onions until they are almost transparent before adding Soyrizo and kicking up the burner to medium-high. Brown the Soyrizo and remove mixture from heat. To your pan add the coffee, sour cream, and nutritional yeast. Mix well. Spoon a liberal amount of gravy over your potato cakes and serve with something pretty like mixed fruit on the side.
(since the dish itself is surprisingly delicious but horribly ugly.)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hangover Breakfast Tacos

I developed this recipe to utilize french fries I had leftover from a previous evenings dinner. I know what you're thinking but you're wrong. You CAN reheat french fries. While it's true that they are quite disgusting when kept in their true form the day after they've been prepared, when repurposed as follows they are quite delicious. Besides, they're super easy to make a ton of and nutritionally rich, making them ideal for the night after you've partied too hard and wake up to ten hungry people sleeping on the floor of your apartment. This recipe also works with pretty much any kind of potato you have leftover.
Save your french fries, I'm bringin' it back.

1 pound soft tofu
1 tsp. yellow mustard 
2 tbls. earth balance butter 
2 tbls. minced garlic
3 tbls. nutritional yeast
1/2 cup salsa
8? (when I make eight I end up having filling leftover so you know, play it by sight) small blue corn (or whatever you like) tortillas

preheat slightly oiled skillet to med-high heat before adding entire block of tofu.
mash and scramble tofu until it reaches a consistency similar to that of scrambled eggs.
Mix in mustard, minced garlic, and earth balance.
while allowing the excess liquid to cook off from the tofu, preheat a second skillet to med-high heat but  
do not oil this one.
Add your potatoes to the pan and chop them roughly with sputula. Allow them to stirfry until potatoes are heated through and slightly browned. Remove from heat and stir in salsa.
preheat your broiler.
Lay out tortillas on a cookie sheet, I haven't had a problem with them sticking as they're under the broiler for such a short time, but feel free to set down aluminum foil if you're worried.
Tofu should be done once it's cooked away most of its water and become relatively dry.
Mix Nutritional yeast into tofu once you've removed it from heat. (NOTE: don't ever do this step prematurely, adding nutritional yeast while the tofu is still cooking will cause it to cook away a large amount of its nutritional value.)
spoon tofu and potato mixture onto tortillas, at this point you can add shredded Daiya or any cheese of your preference if you would like, but the tacos are still delicious even if you don't have it on hand.
place cookie sheet onto your middle over rack and broil with the over door ajar for approximately 5 minutes. (You'll know they're ready when the corners of each tortilla start to curl up a bit.)
Remove from broiler and garnish with a spoonful of tofutti sour cream, and a wedge of lime.
(...or don't and they'll still be good)


optional additions-

+add diced onions to tofu while sauteing+
+add black beans before you put tortillas under broiler+
+use enchilada sauce or vegan mole instead of salsa+
+add avocado slices to finished tacos+

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

spinach and eggplant lasagna

1 large eggplant cut lengthwise into slices
1 bunch spinach roughly torn to shreds
1 package Spelt lasagna (or any lasagna noodle you prefer)
a few cups leftover tomato sauce
3-4 oz. Daiya cheese
2 tsp. olive oil. 
4 teaspoons italian seasoned breadcrumbs (whole wheat is best but anykind works)

Slice eggplant into rounds and lightly salt both sides. Let sit for 10-20 minutes to draw out any bitter juices then brush with olive oil and broil for 3 minutes per side, set aside.
Add spinach to sauce pan with 1/4 cup water and cover. cook over medium heat until spinach has wilted, set aside
prepare pasta according to package directions
preheat oven to 350 degrees and use the olive oil to grease the bottom and sides of your lasagna pan. Don't forget to do this! I can never remember to oil my pans and stick-to-the-side-lasagna, (while still delicious once you hack it away from its stronghold) is not pretty.

Now it's time for the fun part! Begin with a layer of tomato sauce, at about the thickness you would were you to spread it on pizza. Top this with your first layer of lasagna noodles. Then add another thin layer of sauce topped with eggplant rounds. Your first layer of spinach follows this, it will be all clumped together from the wilting so do your best to take little pinches and spread them somewhat evenly across the eggplant rounds. top this with a generous sprinkling of cheese. Repeat the layering in this order until you are near the top, reserving a healthier spread of sauce and sprinkling of cheese for the very top. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top to finish.
bake at 350 for 45 minutes and then keep the pan in the oven while you turn the broiler on and broil with an open door until your breadcrumbs darken and crisp up.
You're done! I like this with a really simple salad and any red wine with a lighter body. If you're cheap, like me, you should try "pinot evil" pinot noir. super good, super inexpensive

so good Vegan Chile Rellenos

I should say that this was NOT my original recipe, but one I adapted after finding it originally at NOTE: I use fire roasted whole chiles from the can, a little cheat perhaps, but having tried this recipe using both options I know they taste exactly the same, and I only needed to experience the IMMENSE annoyance that is chile peeling one time before opting for the easy route. I left the instructions on how to prepare fresh chiles intact from the original recipe so that you can try it if you like...and then you can decide to use the canned ones after that.


6-8 large Anaheim Chiles


1 1/2 cups flour, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 ounces beer

the filling (adapt at will):

10 oz. Daiya Cheese (or 1 package "Follow Your Heart" mozzarella vegan cheese if you aren't lucky enough to live some place where Daiya is plentiful)- diced
a couple of cloves of diced garlic
1/2 cup diced onion
3/4 cup of soft tofu
2 tsp. nutritional yeast
Red Sauce. I used a can of "Hatch Enchilda Sauce - Medium"

First, make the batter:

Combine 1 cup of the flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl. Gradually add the beer, whisking until the batter is smooth. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate while you do the rest.

Second, char and skin the chili's:

Now, you need to skin the chile's. If you don't already know, there is a very thin membrane over the chile flesh, that is the skin.

If you have a gas stove, you can just do this over the flame. I don't, so I used my broiler pan in the oven, and broiled the chile's on HI for 5-7 minutes each side. They will bubble up and discolor, that is normal. Once they are charred, put them in a bag, or a bowl with a damp towel and let them "sweat" for 10 minutes or so, this will loosen the skin. Tip, while the sweating is going on, skip ahead and start making the filling.

After sweating, remove the skin from the chile while holding it under running cool water. Its kinda a pain. Be gentle, don't tear the chile flesh into pieces.

This is the most difficult part about the recipe. I'd suggest practicing on a single chile before you make anything at all, if you are concerned. If you screw up, you can always stir-fry the remains.

Third, make the filling:

Sautee the onions, garlic, and other fillings until cooked and soft (NOT the cheese). Remove from heat and let cool until it won't melt the cheese. Mix with the cheese. Add as much red sauce to it as you want, but only as much as it gonna get absorbed, you don't want soup. I ended up with extra filling, you can always throw it on top of some rice or beans as a side dish.

Fourth, stuff 'em:

Make an incision the length of each chile and remove the stems and seeds. Mine were so floppy they basically flipped inside out and I just rinsed the gunk out. Imagine scenes from The Predator. Be careful not to tear them up. Gently stuff them with filling. Set aside.

Fif, batter 'em:

I had trouble with this step. I wanted a really thick batter to make them reminiscent of the types I used to eat, and since I wasn't going to fry them, I thought a thick batter would bake better. The problem is, a thick batter is harder to get onto the chile, and you risk ripping the chile in half while dipping it. I have another untested idea, which is to make more of a dough, and roll it out, and then wrap the stuffed chiles in it, more like a calzone, but I haven't tried this yet. So, go with the batter recipe as listed above to make a runny batter.

Put the remaining 1/2 cup of flour on a surface or plate.
Prepare a greased baking dish that will hold the chiles
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

While holding the slit side of the chile facing up and trying to keep it closed, dip the stuffed chile in the batter. Ideally, you don't want much batter getting into the chile, because it will cook slower and you might have gooey raw flour in the middle. Remove it and dredge it through the flour.

Put it in the dish and repeat.

Sixth, bake them:

All of the parts have already been pre-cooked, you are only baking to set up the batter. I forgot to time this part. Do it for about 10 minutes and check it. At this point, you can spoon some red sauce over them, if you like. Then cook 10 minutes more, or until you think the batter is cooked.